Balance Rest and Activity
When your joints hurt, you tend to avoid using them. Not that rest isn't important too. But too much rest, that is not balanced with activity, can have negative consequences. Your muscles will get weak and you will experience more stiffness and more pain, if you are unable to stay active. As you lose strength over time, you lose mobility. That's certainly not what you want. So even though you may not feel like moving around, you must be mindful that it's important you do.
Stay Active and Reap the Benefits
If you stay active, here's how you may benefit. Staying active with regular physical activity that is not beyond your limitations:
- can actually reduce pain associated with arthritis.
- can maintain or improve your balance, posture, mobility, and energy level.
- can improve your flexibility as well as muscle and bone strength.
- helps stimulate muscle growth and slows the process of losing muscle mass as you age.
- helps to promote the lubrication of joints for better joint health.
- helps you maintain a healthy weight.
The Bottom Line
Strong muscles help to protect your joints. Maintaining joint function is essential to preserving mobility and independence. And remember, any activity is better than none. If you stay active, the benefits will extend beyond the physical. You can boost your self-esteem and generally improve your ability to cope with osteoarthritis.
Save Your Knees. Seniors and Exercise. American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. February 2008.
A National Public Health Agenda for Osteoarthritis. CDC. February 4, 2010.